Wednesday, November 25, 2015

World Enough and Time

As I back into the Thanksgiving holiday weekend, global risk has never been higher. There is really not a clear beginning to Daesh, the organization that calls itself The Islamic State or ISIS.  We do know that a caliphate was declared in 2014 after the group broke away from others with similar intentions in the Mideast.  Since the caliphate was declared, the threat from Daesh has spread from the Mideast into other parts of the world, most recently into Paris about ten days ago.

We can analyze where Daesh's money comes from, and how sophisticated its use of social media is, but in point of fact we are dealing with terrorists, fanatics whose goal is to reform the world, to remake it free of the perversity, corruption and heretics it condemns with words from Islamic teaching.

In February I published a piece in The Risk Universe suggesting that the NSA and Anonymous team up to take down financial supply chain lines that fuel Daesh's operations.  Formally, only Anonymous has responded, taking down over 20,000 Twitter sites that are used to recruit young people or pass on propaganda of one sort or another.  I know that NSA and other American intelligence operations have stepped up their efforts online in the last week, and hope that the Pentagon is not far behind, despite those overly optimistic "We have contained ISIS" messages that were being sent out by higher ups.

So tomorrow is Thanksgiving.  I wish each of you a lovely day, one with time to reflect on just how very fortunate we are to live in a country that has a constitution and amendments to protect basic human freedoms, of late to protect those freedoms against political ignoramuses.  Blake has a poem called "The Grey Monk," in which he talks about the cycle of tyranny, and how very easy it is to become (a fanatic) what you behold (fanatics, terrorists, hate crimes), and "become a tyrant in his stead."

Ignoramuses abound.  Do we think that all Christians are members of the Klu Klux Klan?

 I'll be writing more on this topic for the December newsletter; and also for a January piece in The Risk Universe.   In the meantime, you might wish to review this excellent article from Continuity Central by my colleague Peter Power, in which he  has excerpted simple "Stay Safe" checklists for everyone. 

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